updated 09:25 am EDT, Thu August 27, 2009
ASUS to Make E Book Reader
ASUS chief Jerry Shen today said his company would produce its first e-book reader before the end of the year. He didn't provide many details but said the device would fall under the Eee line normally reserved for ASUS' low-cost allin-one computers, like the Eee PC netbooks or the upcoming Eee Keyboard. Any device is likely to need a mixture of support for protected and unprotected e-book formats to succeed and may need a 3G or Wi-Fi connection to compete with readers like the Amazon Kindle or the Sony Reader Daily Edition.
Simultaneously, DigiTimes has heard that MSI may enter the e-book reader category itself, though no other details are available beyond the company investigating the possibility.
Whether or not either of these will prove successful is unknown and may hinge on the abilities of ASUS or MSI to link into major online bookstores, either by using a common format like EPUB or striking an exclusive deal. Amazon and Sony have typically been the most successful and have done so by running their own e-book stores as well as making the hardware.